Fox determined to get Dublin back up the camogie ladder

By Daire Walsh

Following a difficult couple of seasons at the top level, the Dublin senior camogie squad will be aiming to recapture the form that saw them reaching an All-Ireland championship semi-final in 2017.

Assisting them in this endeavour is St Jude’s club man Donie Fox, who will work alongside new manager Adrian O’Sullivan in the role of team coach. Despite the Metropolitans failing to register a single win from the five competitive games they played in 2020, he believes the potential is there to make a big impact on the inter-county scene this year. 

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St Jude’s clubman Donie Fox was appointed coach of the Dublin senior camogie team

“There’s a good hunger amongst the core players there to get back to that [2017] level. Regardless of what happened over the last couple of seasons, at the moment we can see that there’s an opportunity to bring a good level of coaching and a good level of development to Dublin camogie,” Fox explained.

“That’s what we’re going to work hard on for the first couple of weeks and months. A lot of the squad from 2017 are still there. They know what it takes. It’s just about creating the right environment and allowing them to get back to those levels of performance.” 

A native of Galway, Fox was an All-Ireland minor and under-21 winner with the Tribesmen before subsequently joining forces with Jude’s and the Dublin hurlers.

He steered the Templeogue outfit to senior camogie championship successes in 2018 and 2020, and is set to remain at the helm for the forthcoming defence of their county crown.

“I’m still going to be involved with St Jude’s. The key thing with my role with Dublin, it’s going to be a coaching role rather than a selector role. My job stops at the point where teams and squads are being selected.

“It would just be too much conflict of interest. It’s not the right way to go about it, if I was coaching players at club level and selecting them at inter-county level. It doesn’t really work, I don’t think.”

Nonetheless, Fox’s familiarity with the Dublin club scene will be of huge benefit to O’Sullivan as he steps into a role vacated by the joint management team of John Treacy and Willie Braine. 

The Limerick man guided UL towards back-to-back Ashbourne Cup titles in 2019 and 2020 and while a number of the Sky Blues panel featured heavily in this third-level competition, Fox can help him to gain a wider understanding of the talent at their disposal.

“I don’t think there’s anybody in that squad that I haven’t seen play or come up against with St Jude’s. It gives us a nice insight into the group of players that we’re going to be working with.

"It helps me give Adrian an insight into them too, where he’d be a little bit less familiar.

“From a club level in Dublin, there’s an awful lot more players that he maybe wouldn’t have seen. I think it will be complimentary to have both of us there,” Fox added. 

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